Getting Handy

Day 8

Back to work on heads and hands. Peter finished with the servant elf today so I carved up some arms and got him all rigged up. It took a little while since I had to remember how we did the others. Fortunately, I’ve been keeping detailed notes. There are also the other two to refer to. So it only took me the morning to put everything together:

  1. Carve wrist joints
  2. Drill bungee holes in hands, ball joints and forearm
  3. Carve nesting holes for the bungee knots
  4. Cut and shape control rod
  5. Drill hole for rod (this was a little different as we wanted the hands to naturally rest in a very specific position)
  6. Cut and drill dowel for rod grip
  7. Attach arms with hinges
  8. Bungee hand to forearm
  9. Shape arms with dremel
  10. Finish arms and hands with a sanding bit
  11. Epoxy sculpt rod and knot holes


I should’ve taken pictures of the process. Next time.

After that I decided to just practice my carving by attempting a few hands. I started by working plasticine just to get a feel for shape and proportion and after a few goes with that, I just dove right in with a block of wood.

2013-04-25 14.07.56

My first attempt was going ok until the index finger suddenly snapped off. A lesson in working with the grain vs working against the grain. Apparently, you want the wood grain running the length of the hand rather than the breadth. So I started again. It took all afternoon, but in the end I got something that looks like a hand. Tomorrow I’ll finish it off and start in on the next one.

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